COL (R) David E. Thompson was appointed in July, 2012 by Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear to serve as the Executive Director and Chair, Kentucky Commission on Military Affairs.
COL Thompson first entered military service as a private in the Texas Army National Guard in 1983. Upon graduation from Texas A&M University in 1986 with a degree in Agricultural Economics, he received his commission as a second lieutenant in the Armor branch.
After completion of the Armor Officer Basic Course at Fort Knox, Kentucky his first assignment was to Fort Polk, Louisiana. There he served as a Tank Platoon Leader, Company Executive Officer, and Scout Platoon Leader in 3d Battalion, 70th Armor of the 5th Infantry Division. After attending the Armor Officers Advanced Course he served as a Senior Class Advisor to the Armor Officer Basic Course prior to deploying to Southwest Asia. During Operation Desert Storm, he served as an Assistant S3 with 4th Battalion, 70th Armor, 1st Armored Division.
Following Desert Storm, COL Thompson served in the Republic of Korea as a Brigade Plans Officer and as a Tank Company Commander in 2d Battalion, 72d Armor. Following company command, he was assigned to the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, California where he served as an Observer Controller with the Mechanized Task Force Training Team (Scorpions). He then returned to Fort Knox to serve as a Small Group Instructor for the Officer Advanced Course and as Chief, Armor Officer Basic Course. In 1998, COL Thompson returned overseas to serve in Kuwait with the Office of Military Cooperation, American Embassy, as a military advisor to host nation forces. Upon return to the United States he attended the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.
From 2000 to 2009, COL Thompson served at Fort Hood, Texas. His assignments there include Battalion S3 of 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, Brigade S3 of 1st Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division and Aide de Camp to the Commanding General of III Corps and Fort Hood. COL Thompson deployed to Operation Iraqi Freedom II as the Brigade Executive Officer of 1st Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division in 2003. In 2004, COL Thompson took command of 3d Battalion, 66th Armor, 4th Infantry Division. The battalion redesignated and reorganized to 7th Squadron, 10th Cavalry Regiment (Armored Reconnaissance Squadron) and deployed to Operation Iraqi Freedom 05-07 in December 2005. During the deployment, the squadron fought as part of Multi-National Division Baghdad, controlling a large battlespace and securing multiple population centers northwest of Baghdad, Iraq. COL Thompson transferred to Fort Knox Kentucky in May, 2009, taking command of the 194th Armored Brigade. He was responsible for the training of over 25,000 personnel as well as the movement of the brigade to Fort Benning, Georgia as part of the Defense Base Realignment and Closure process. COL Thompson retired from active duty in 2011.
Upon leaving active service in the Army, COL Thompson was employed by CAE, USA where he held positions of Program Manager and Director, Business Development, Ground Training Systems.
COL Thompson holds a master degree in Administration from Central Michigan University. His awards include the Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, the Bronze Star Medal with oak leaf cluster, the Meritorious Service Medal with seven oak leaf clusters, the Army Commendation Medal with four oak leaf clusters and the Joint Service Achievement Medal. COL Thompson is also authorized to wear the Combat Action Badge, the Ranger Tab and Airborne Badge.
COL Thompson is married to Marcella and they have two daughters.